Stats for this track
In 9 SetsView all
With the fate of the mighty “Farm Bill” still unclear, we take a look at how farmers became such powerful players in American politics, and American life.
In the 18th Century, Thomas Jefferson saw farmers as ideal citizens, whose agricultural lifestyle would uphold a virtuous republic. Just 2% of Americans live on farms today, however, yet the republic persists – however virtuous – and farmers still loom large in the national consciousness. In this episode, Peter, Brian, and Ed consider why the ideal of the self-sufficient, independent American farmer is still so powerful – even as the reality has changed dramatically – and who has invoked that ideal over time. From railroad companies to anti-imperialists, the image of the “yeoman farmer” has served many different ends over the years, and served to anchor one of the most successful government lobbies in history.
For more on the guests and stories featured in this episode, and for an array of resources on farmers and farming in America, take a look at BackStory's website: http://backstoryradio.org/shows/green-acres-2/